One of the most bizarre rodents, populating the deserts of East Africa, is the naked mole-rat. Famed as the longest living rodent in the world, this wrinkly mole rat has a life span of 30 years. With two yellow buck teeth protruding from a pale, hairless body, the mammal may not be an eye-pleaser, but it has an alluring longevity-related adaptation that has gripped researchers in recent years: It seems to be immune to cancer.
Nurul Islam, 37, was enjoying the afternoon with his niece, Mayrian Islam,11, and nephew, Ryhan Kaliq, 9, and snapping pictures in front of a fake Victorian-style ruin when suddenly a "ghost" appeared out of nowhere. At first, Nurul didn't think it could possibly be an apparition. But, then again, he also says he made sure all the other tourists were out of the way before he snapped this shot.
The dugong is a herbivorous marine mammal, often called the “sea cow” for its habit of grazing on seagrass meadows. Dugongs are related to manatees and are similar in appearance and behavior— though the dugong’s tail is fluked like a whale’s. These mammals can stay underwater for six minutes before surfacing. They sometimes breathe by “standing” on their tail with their heads above water.
They are found across the world’s oceans at depths of 1,600 to 24,000 feet, where they are among the largest animals. One species has been recorded at more than 6 feet in length and weighing 13 pounds. They live on, or close to, the seafloor, where they hunt a variety of invertebrates. These big-eared creatures are unusual for octopuses because they’re able to swallow their prey whole.
The Panda Ant is a most unusual species of insect. Their name derives from the obvious resemblance to a panda in its markings. This remarkable insect is not even an ant. The Panda Ant is actually a variety of wingless wasp! Very little is known of this little seen insect. They have been seen to bring down animals as large as cows with only a few dozen stings.
Though this isn't an *official* ghost sighting, back in 2013 21-year-old Elisa Lam went missing on vacation in Los Angeles. Her body was found in a water tank in a downtown L.A. hotel, and this was the last footage of her seen before she disappeared. (Oh, and still nobody knows how the body got there.) We have to wonder what Lam was *really* seeing in her final moments...
A year passed and they returned to the lagoon as a memorial, but as they approached they saw their friend standing there, head bowed. Excitedly they called to him and began running towards him, but he didn’t turn. As they got closer they called him more desperately, but still to no avail. With joy they ran towards him, but stopped dead when they saw not one but five crosses on the waterside.
If this is all an accident of the lighting and their shitty cell-phone cameras, then it was a lucky damned accident, considering they were specifically there to hunt ghosts in what they thought was a haunted abandoned building. If they doctored the video with effects later, then this is a remarkably subtle job. These are giggling teenagers goofing around, and we're pretty sure they gave us a creepier ghost effect than any of the Paranormal Activity movies. So good job, guys -- you successfully creeped us out, one way or another.
In January 2013, a Canadian student at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver was reported missing, having last been seen at the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles. After Elisa Lam had been missing for a week and a half, LA police released this video of her last known appearance. Three weeks later, Lam's body was discovered naked and drowned in the building's water tower, and her death was labeled an accident. Her mystery reportedly inspired Ryan Murphy to make American Horror Story: Hotel.
From the side, this mole only looks a bit odd, but seen head-on, it can be quite startling. It is considered by numerous people to be incredibly ugly with its odd tentacle-like nose. In reality, the 11 pairs of appendages on the snout are quite amazing. They contain over 25,000 sensory receptors which are called Eimer’s organs. This is the critter’s main sensory apparatus, and it is so fine-tuned that scientists believe it can detect seismic waves. There’s nothing really ugly about the star-nose mole. It’s just different, and its own weird way, quite cute.
Is it just us, or does this frog look like Kermit? There are many different species of glass frogs, but this little guy is a new discovery — the first in Costa Rica since 1973. While its bright green coloring might grab your attention, the coolest part about this frog is that it is see-through. That’s right — the underside is translucent, providing a stunning view of the amphibian’s internal organs. If you want to see one, you’ll have to keep your eyes peeled — these tiny jumpers are less than an inch long.
These spiky spiders look pretty damn awesome. There are numerous different species of spiny orb weavers, all belonging to the genus Gasteracantha. One such example is G. cancriformis which is found in some parts of the US, Central America and some parts of the Caribbean. They’re around 2-9mm in total length and come in a variety of colors and shapes, and some have colored legs too.
Blobfish, pangolin, and flower mantis are just a few of the names of the bizarre bugs and animals that readers will learn about in this fascinating nonfiction title. Through vibrant images and photos, informational text, a glossary of terms, and an index, readers will learn some of the strange ways that arthropods, invertebrates, and mammals have adapted over time to camouflage themselves and develop interesting ways to keep predators away.
As a senior writer for Live Science, Laura Geggel covers general science, including the environment and amazing animals. She has written for The New York Times, Scholastic, Popular Science and Spectrum, a site covering autism research. Laura grew up in Seattle and studied English literature and psychology at Washington University in St. Louis before completing her graduate degree in science writing at NYU. When not writing, you'll find Laura playing Ultimate Frisbee. Follow Laura on Google+.
Mommy told me never to go in the basement, but I wanted to see what was making that noise. It kind of sounded like a puppy, and I wanted to see the puppy, so I opened the basement door and tiptoed down a bit. I didn’t see a puppy, and then Mommy yanked me out of the basement and yelled at me. Mommy had never yelled at me before, and it made me sad and I cried. Then Mommy told me never to go into the basement again, and she gave me a cookie. That made me feel better, so I didn’t ask her why the boy in the basement was making noises like a puppy, or why he had no hands or feet.
It’s been nearly a decade since it was first uploaded, but “I Feel Fantastic” is still only a little less mysterious than when it first captured the attention of the internet. The featured robot, Tara the Android, is the creation of an robot hobbyist who calls himself "John Bergeron." The plan was for Tara to be the first android pop star, but the bizarre description on the YouTube upload that references Pygmalion and a cutaway from I Feel Fantastic to an outdoor location gave birth to several online urban legends. Is Tara a harmless pop star, or a robot built in the image of a murder victim?
Now, the obvious answer here is that the girl is on a wire. There's even a convenient gap in the filming -- as the guy is moving in closer, the camera is pointed at the ground for a second or two, and when it snaps back up, the little girl is already back on the ground. We don't ever actually see her descend, which if wires were involved would be a dead giveaway. You'd see her tilting awkwardly or her clothes pulling up at odd angles wherever the wires were attached, even if she were wearing a harness. So clearly, she's being held aloft by wires that are connected somewhere in the trees ...